– 3 min. min
Published: 01. September 2022
By Mikkel Dalgas
CTO at Trackunit
By Dave Swan
SVP Products at Trackunit
– 3 min.

Embrace transparency. It’s the path to building a better industry.

Dave Swan, SVP of Product and Mikkel Dalgas, CTO, unveiled during an open session at the Downtime Festival how we at Trackunit are tackling the blight of downtime. Transparency is the key.

The construction sector is a complex industry. So complex that we believe only through increased contact with the wider market, will we lessen the challenges of development and implementation across a global marketplace.

Trackunit is willing to take a big bet on the industry’s willingness to embrace a transparent, open process that will provide scale to the development process.

Construction through a Prism

Our journey is through a prism of three big themes that need to be addressed to drive technology acceptance in the industry. For us these are Home of the Operator, Analytics, and AI (Artificial Intelligence).

When we say Home of the Operator, we mean how people interact with the construction site, in the rental yard or at the OEM. How do we help them to be more productive and ensure increased safety?
In some ways we are lucky in construction. We can learn from how technology has transformed other industries, such as healthcare, agriculture, and data centers. Where once smartphones were banned for perceived safety concerns, today they are central to delivering core services. Through our expanding Bluetooth and mobile network, our Iris, cloud based IoT extendable platform, and the increasing market for our IoT Kin tags customers can increase productivity by eliminating time spent searching for lost tools and equipment.

Ours is an increasingly complicated industry where health and safety can also be improved through digitalization. Training updates can be sent to handsets as part of continual learning programs. Machinery prechecks and possible problems can be highlighted via user’s mobile to ensure equipment is safe and the operator has the correct license and training (ePAL). All this activity generates data, and processing this information increases the quality of the machine response to the operators’ input.

Analytics or the Brain of Construction

Our second theme requires the continuous gathering of billions of data points from across the industry and around the globe. How much more productive could we be if thousands of organizations and individuals shared their data from early design schematics, through equipment development, on site activity to meteorological data? More actionable data provides the base to create more efficient machines, more accurate diagnostics to equipment faults and ensure maintenance teams arrive with the correct spares, saving thousands of return journeys.

Everyday companies across the industry are making big bets, decisions that involve large investment, people and possibly the future of the organization. Joining forces with ZTR’s IIoT division, has increased our understanding and capability of data capture and delivery, and together we have accelerated our connected network past the 1.3-million device mark.

We and thousands of companies across the industry generate and store data which is helping measure inputs from tens of thousands of project sites. Stored and live data from geo-fenced projects are helping companies map out what activities are productive and what activities are unproductive and error prone.

By developing automated processes which utilize this data, we can implement new processes and products to change construction for the better.

This allows those big bets to be less risky. However, this requires access and agreement to share data from which industry benchmarks can be developed, shared, and used to drive productivity and sustainability throughout the industry.

The Thinking Machine, our Big Bet

Our third theme, AI, which links the first two, is a step into the future of continuous product development and enhancement. This means more effective machines and systems are brought to market, offering better analytics and longer, productive life cycles.

We believe this is fundamental to the industry’s development. We mentioned that construction is a constantly changing environment. Even so, it is often compared to On-Highway Vehicles with its trucks and drivers. However, we are connecting hundreds of types of machines from numerous vendors, interacting in complex ways. All this data sharing requires a highly secure, extendable platform as its foundation. This shared platform must be scalable, open, and well documented, while providing data security with sophisticated cybersecurity measures.

In this manner the industry becomes a marketplace and can confidently share ideas and develop technology that benefits the business, its customers, and the industry.

Trackunit’s big bet is the belief that transparency across our industry will open opportunities, increase cooperation and build awareness and trust and a genuine shared development pathway. Our purpose is to support our customers and this highly complex marketplace with technology that increases your productivity and supports your business goals.

Roadmaps are very important to that goal, and the closer we are to our customers and the industry the better the solutions we can develop. In this highly complex market, we must scale that dialog, so Trackunit becomes the connectivity partner for the construction industry.

Our solution is the Trackunit Product Portal which went live during the Downtime Festival. This facility provides a transparent view on our development process with the opportunity to contribute your ideas and requirements directly through the portal. We are sharing our roadmap with you to better align our product and customer vision. The four sections allow you to investigate and comment on Launched products, Beta and Early Access on new ideas and directions, Building for coming to market features, and Planning where you get to comment on future resources.

This is an open door for direct access to our development process. Opening ourselves in this way brings far more people into development, because we are going to take those inputs and use them in our customer workshops. We believe scaling with data will guide us towards customers’ most important pain points, so we can solve then together.

If you missed out on Mikkel’s and Dave’s talk at the Downtime Festival, you can catch up with the recording here.

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Published: 01. September 2022

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By Mikkel Dalgas
CTO at Trackunit
By Dave Swan
SVP Products at Trackunit


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